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Monday, December 4, 2017

Letter: Curling in our community


Pincher Creek Curling Club Past President and Building Committee Chairperson Debbie Reed - First, it is wonderful to have so many citizens interested in curling and our community. Recently in the media, valid concerns and questions have been expressed most of which have been addressed in council meetings and/or Facilities Steering Committee meetings over the past 10 years. In February of 2015 representatives of the club were invited to sit on the Town of Pincher Creek Facilities Subcommittee regarding a new curling rink. The Curling Club, a member owned facility, is one of three in the province of Alberta, all others being owned and operated by municipalities. Currently, half our members are from Town and half from the MD of Pincher Creek. Ages of our members range from 18 to 85 years.The percentage of the total population that curls in Pincher creek is up to five times more than surrounding communities.



After researching curling and health benefits along with the opportunity for families to play together and for young and old to interact socially and physically together makes me wonder why more people are not joining this sport. We have a very strong junior program starting at age 10 and our Sturling leagues for seniors and physically challenged persons are becoming very popular. Our afternoons are filled with our junior program, students from schools learning to curl, along with Sturling league play. Our nights are also filled with Sturling, Mens, and Mixed teams playing. Check out our website www.pinchercreekcurlingclub.com for more information.

BENEFITS OF CURLING

Drop Ins Welcome: You can join at any time during the year as an individual or team.

Health Benefits. Provides an excellent cardiovascular workout, increases balance and agility. According to The Journal for Aging and Physical Activity (September 2017 issue) Any level of (curling) experience reported significantly better functionality, physical confidence, and aging-attitudes compared to non-curlers

Curling is a game of etiquette. It is always preceded by a handshake and expression of "good game" Age doesn't matter. Curling can be enjoyed at any age by any gender.

Inexpensive Minimal cost for leagues, bonspiels(tournaments). Equipment will last for years.

Olympic sport. Many Albertans have been to the Olympics and it is a recognized lifelong sport.

Strategy Curling is referred to as chess on ice because you decide your moves after each rock is thrown.

Family and Social community building sport. Curling does not discriminate. It allows for all walks of life to interact with each other and socialize. This is a great sport for building a stronger community.

Everyone participates All players are engaged, everyone on a team plays and no one has to sit out.

Easy to learn with few rules.

Safe. With the stick curling and grippers, the young and old can play without fear of falling. We have children age 10+ at this point in our Junior program but will look at programs for younger players in the future.

Emotional Mastery. Players learn to calm their emotions so they can trust their instincts while delivering a rock.

Teamwork. Promotes working together to make decisions and play the game.

History of the local club:

We are a self sustaining club and do not ask for operating money from the Town or MD for normal operating costs.

2007 A needs assessment for the Town of Pincher Creek recreational facilities was completed. The curling rink was one of the facilities that was flagged for review. 

2009 Town of Pincher Creek Assessment report was completed by AECOM and another report by Krystal Engineers regarding the curling rink. At this time, AECOM recommended "the entire facility be replaced immediately". Krystal Engineers suggested some mandatory code violations and repairs that needed to be fixed or dealt with immediately.

2013 The club completed the mandatory repairs (Krystal Engineers recommendations) with some help from the Town and the MD.

2017 A new plant was approved with matching funds of $140,000 each from the Town and the MD along with a $125,000 CFEP grant. This plant was long overdue and was recommended by Krystal Engineers to be replaced in 5 years. (2014) 

Regarding New Curling Rink,

In reference to engineer reports in 2009 and in 2013 our time is up. We need to rebuild. The building has outlived its life. The CFEP funding stream recently changed and we decided to apply for the 1 million dollar grant as the previous town council put money aside for matching grants with the intent to build a new rink. We have been and will continue to be asking our MD council to also provide funds for this project.

Regarding sites,

The club needed a site for grant approval. All sites were measured for a 4 sheet rink and were discussed at town council meetings and Facility Committee meetings 2015 to present. Sites discussed have been Sobeys building, current location, Ag grounds, Golf course, Downtown.

Please consider that there have been many hours and countless meetings discussing the concerns and questions we have recently seen in both written media and the social forums. Please talk to your Councillors representing you on the Facilities committee and ask them your questions or contact us if you have curling questions at pinchercreekcurlingclub@gmail.com.

Thank You, 
Debbie Reed

Pincher Creek Curling Club
Past President
Building Committee Chairperson

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